Civil and Structural Engineer, Kalina Dimitrova

As part of our series celebrating Green Careers Week, we spoke to Kalina Dimitrova, a Civil and Structural Engineer based in Scotland. Kalina is also a Go Construct STEM Ambassador and is passionate about the work she does. “It is great to touch something that I’ve imagined and designed, knowing my skills were instrumental in bringing it into being.”

Why do you like working in the construction industry?

Kalina: The work structural engineers do has an incredible, long-lasting impact. We design buildings to last for 50 years, so our structures will be used and enjoyed by thousands of people long after we’ve gone. We also breathe new life into old structures – renovating or changing the use of buildings that were designed decades ago and adapting them to completely new purposes. We’re also at the forefront of making sure our infrastructure is safe and fit for purpose and tackles the climate emergency. Engineering is an ever-evolving field and there is never a dull day on the job.


Can you share your favourite green construction project that you’ve worked on, and explain what was involved?

Kalina: “My favourite green construction project is Countesswells Primary School in Aberdeen which recently finished being built. The project involved a structural steel braced frame, with composite concrete floors in two storeys. The building is clad with brickwork to the first-floor level with composite cladding above. At the outset of the project, I was actively involved in appraising options available, identifying key constraints and positively influencing the site layout so that the best possible sustainable solution was developed.


How has the approach to sustainability in construction evolved?

Kalina: “I think we are a lot more mindful of the carbon footprint we leave behind not only in the construction industry but in day to day life. As such I see a shift towards reduction of material usage on projects as well as sourcing locally instead of internationally. Greater emphasis has also been placed on the life of buildings and recycling and refurbishing.”


Which green construction trends do you predict will gain traction in the coming years?

Kalina: “There is also a lot of promise in carbon-capturing materials such as concrete and green steel, so it is an exciting moment to be involved in the industry. Also optimising the energy efficiency and incorporating clean energy such as solar panels in buildings will continue to grow.”

Feeling inspired? Discover more about sustainability in construction and green construction careers today…

If you want to learn more about sustainability in construction or discover the different green construction careers, get in touch with Go Construct